Month: January 2010

Building Progress ~ December 2009

Back to my old tricks and late as heck we go... From November 2009: Finishing treating the untreated oak stairs and banisters is proving a real pain - the banisters along the landing have all been whitened & waxed, but the stairs themselves along with the banisters running down the stairs still need finishing, they've been whitened but not waxed. The problem is getting the timing right (never my strong point) and being organised enough to be able to wax the stairs as I'm leaving and not returning at least overnight - haven't managed that yet. Well I managed…
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A Place of My Own

For anyone with an interest in building, conversion or renovation, or in just getting your hands dirty, Michael Pollans 'A Place of My Own' is a great opportunity for some self reflection through Pollans written account of his own experiences in constructing 'a room of  [his] own making'.   The book is an insightful, introspective diary of experiences in building a writing hut (a shed with a desk in it) in the woods behind the New England home of the author. Pollans style is chatty and assured. His journey from hopeless sub-DIYer to trainee craftsman gives hope to us all,…
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Self-builders need some encouragement…

I occasionally 'page' through the ecologist website and came this article that piqued my interest: We need a citizens' housing revolution Whilst a little short on content the sentiment - that the development of new housing can be partially entrusted to self-builders who should be 'helped to create vital, sustainable communities' - is one that I totally agree with. As ever, the public sector seem to be one of the main barriers to this (at least according to the Joseph Rowntree Foundation) - the empowered enablers acting to disable the self-builder and retain control.
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Logs 2

With my current preoccupation with firewood and the current bout of ice, snow and freezing temperatures making me long for warm weather a favourite quote of mine comes to mind: ...a mosaic of cut log ends that wall the whole of the south-facing end. The summer sun will dry out the end grain, drawing out the sap until the wood is pure energy for the fire. Roger Deakin's Wildwood: A Journey Through Trees I've just ordered 120 silver birch and hazel trees from the Woodland trust, far from the best trees for firewood but two of my favourites. I'll plant…
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